If you own a lightweight vehicle and plan to haul a trailer, it is important to keep in mind the weight recommendations for your tow vehicle. Exceeding the weight capacity could cause serious problems, such as voided warranties, swaying, or even accidents. To ensure safety, you need to determine the appropriate towing capacity required for your vehicle.

Know Your Tow Vehicle

First, check your owner’s manual to find the maximum towing capacity. The manual will provide you with detailed instructions, limitations, and safety tips for towing with your vehicle. You can also check the certification plate on the driver’s door of your vehicle for this information. In case you have lost your owner’s manual, most manufacturers allow you to download a free copy.

It is also necessary to know your vehicle’s combined gross weight rating (CGWR), which refers to the maximum weight permitted for your vehicle, cargo, passengers, and trailer. Subtract the loaded weight of your vehicle from the CGWR, and you will get the towing capacity.

Weighing In

When it comes to the weight of your trailer, it is best to load and weigh it to get the exact measurement. You can find the vehicle identification number (VIN) plate on the trailer frame. To weigh your loaded tow vehicle and trailer, you can use a vehicle scale available at state highway weigh stations, commercial truck stops, or refuse transfer stations.

To measure your tongue weight, which is the force on the back of your tow vehicle by the trailer, you need to use a specialized tongue weight scale available at towing supply shops or trailer dealers. If your tongue weight is too high, you can shift the weight around inside your trailer. Ideally, 60 percent of the trailer weight should be in the front and 40 percent in the back.

Haul Your Gear With JIMGLO Trailers

To haul your gear safely and easily, JIMGLO offers innovative, lightweight car trailers with advanced technology and sleek design. To learn more about our products, you can contact us online, by phone at 520.384.4564, or toll-free at 888.5.JIMGLO.